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Simply Ramadan. Part 2 - Fidya & Kaffarah

So, we have talked about some basics of Ramadan, and in this section, we will detail the types of penalties that apply to some of those exemptions mentioned in Part 1.
These penalties are mainly divided into two categories; fidya and kaffarah.
Fidya is to be paid in circumstances where one is unable to fast due to helplessness. A donation of £5 per missed fast (days) is required for each individual. This donation aims to feed the hungry two meals a day.
Some examples of where fidya would be due include:

  • The permanently ill
  • Elderly people who are unable to fast
  • Those in need of regular medication, if their wellbeing could be affected
  • Those with any form of mental illness

Kaffarah is to be paid in circumstances where a fast is invalid or intentionally broken. A payment is then required for the broken fast along with the requirement to make up for that fast at a later stage (asap). If this is not possible, they are required to feed 60 poor people per each fast missed or broken at the rate of £5 per person (£5 x 60).
Some examples of situations where kaffarah would be due:

  • Consumption of food or drink with intention
  • Masturbation during fasting
  • Sexual intercourse during fasting
  • Breaking the fast by intentionally throwing up
  • Changing one’s mind with the intent of breaking the fast. Fasting is validated by intention
  • Deliberate or intentional poor characteristics such as lying, backbiting, foul language,deliberately hurting someone’s feelings, etc.
  • Deliberately causing harm to oneself or another living creature or being

There are some situations that invalidate the fast, but only repayment of the qada fast is required. These are mainly situations that are out of one’s control.
Some examples of situations that invalidate the fast and repayment of the fast have been listed below:

  • Menstruation in women, even if this begins before the opening of the fast (dawn)
  • Travelling in an emergency and having to break one's fast
  • Breaking one's fast as a matter of urgency, should there be a risk of danger to one’s health

There are, of course, many other things that could go under each category, as this list is not exhaustive. Furthermore, there are also diverse views and opinions for each circumstance. Should you wish to find out more, you can consult your local community for further guidance.
It is our duty to ensure we recompense for our missed fasts, which apply to us. Furthermore, our purpose for giving to charity should not be confused with these forfeits. Ramadan is a month for giving, and there are many measures we can take in order to feed the hungry. Have a browse through the Muslim Aid website today to find out more about how you can contribute to any of our campaigns, such as the Eid gift programme or our school feeding programme.
Together, let’s master the art of giving this Ramadan, dig deep and help Muslim Aid make this Ramadan a generous one.

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